Aren’t you excited?

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Somehow, the vast majority of the people with whom I work did not know that I had written and sold a novel. I don’t really know how they missed it, since I wasn’t what you’d call reticent about the subject. ๐Ÿ˜€ My book comes out next week, and I have signings scheduled, so my husband insisted I make flyers for him to hand out at his work, and for me to hand out to all the teachers and staff here. Which I did yesterday (I used my red sealing wax and my skull & crossbones seal to make them a little extra piratey!) Ever since, I’ve been dealing with thrilled people coming by to congratulate me. This is wonderful, of course. Happy people being happy for me are always an upper. But inevitably, the question comes – “Aren’t you excited?”

Depends on how you define “excited”, I guess. My hands are constantly shaking, I’m not especially interested in food lately, and if I think about it too much I’m afraid I might throw up and run home and hide under my pillow until Christmas.

When this event was over a year away, I talked about it all the time, planned for it, wondered what I’d wear to a signing, dreamed about the call from my publisher telling me I was on the bestseller lists… all that stuff one thinks about. As time went by, I busied myself writing, answering emails, making copy edits and verifying quotes for the proof editors, so the level of excitement remained fairly constant. But as the number of days until release counted down to single digits, my excitement changed to mild panic.

It’ll be all right, of course. Once I’m behind the table, I’ll smile and chat with people and sign books. Until then, I’m keeping a firm grip on the ground with my feet, and taking lots of deep, calming breaths. I have a massage scheduled soon (Diane, take me away!) I’m pretty sure I can avoid throwing up in front of anyone, since I’ve nearly quit eating. But right this minute I’d prefer to be in my closet in the dark, not answering the phone.

Does that count as excited?

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6 comments to Aren’t you excited?

  • First of all, congratulations, Misty. This will be the first of many, I’m sure, and it won’t be long before this is routine stuff.

    The anxiety is natural. Career wise it’s always nice to have a big success with a first book. That said, my first agent once told me that the worst thing that could happen to me would be for my first book to be a bestseller. His point was, you want your career to grow, and it’s hard to get the trajectory right if you start at the top.

    Your book will do well. It might not be a bestseller. It will get great reviews. It might also get a few poor ones. It will establish you as a writer with a fine career ahead of you. It might not make you an instant superstar. But — and this is the most important thing — even if things don’t go as well as you’d like them to, this one book will not destroy your career. You will write and publish more books. So don’t obsess too much.

    This should be a time of celebration for you. Enjoy the ride.

  • I remember my first book under my own name. The ones under Gary Hunter did little for me, frankly becasue it wasn’t me, you know? It was someone else, and a shared experience at that.

    But the first one under one of my own names???
    It’s all a blur. A sick at the stomach, not able to sleep, miserable blur. Unlike you, I knew no one who had ever been published. No one to tell me to relax, remember to breathe, remember to celebrate the little moments

    What David said is totally true. Hitting the top with a first book is a long fall. My bestseller stature in the UK never repeated, and numbers in the US have varied so much over the years that it’s hard to keep up.

    But I’ve learned to relax a lot more. And to spend time in meditation and prayer and exercise. I’m with you honey! Cheering you on.

    CONGRATULATIONS!!!!!!!!!!!!!
    Faith

  • First off congratulations and second I just have to say that yes panic is a form of excitement, just not the good form. I really can’t contribute much to the comment here though, my experience runs so far to small publications.

    Oh and I hope your book is well received.

  • Michele Conti

    Congratulations! Good Luck! And, the most wonderful bit of stolen wisdom ever…. “Just picture everyone naked.” Then, shudder. ๐Ÿ™‚ Everything will be fine after that.

    I can’t wait for it to be available.

  • Thanks, y’all. I tend to keep my work and private lives very, very separate, so it became a little overwhelming when everyone at work was coming by to talk to me.

    I think I needed to say it out loud (so to speak) to get it out of my system. I appreciate the support, and the wisdom offered. Thank you!

    Now to get back to writing…

  • Yes, that’s excited. ๐Ÿ™‚ *HUGS*!